noise cancelling headphones in nature grass flowers

Noise Cancelling Head Zones

Do you have a pair of noise cancelling headphones?

Most people do. Or at least a pair of headphones they use to filter out the noise.

Noise cancelling headphones are growing in popularity for many a good reason:

  • Working without distraction.
  • Reading while someone else has the TV on.
  • Filtering out the sound of public transport.
  • Ignoring the screams and tantrums of your children…

Okay maybe it’s time to stop and make sure the kids are ok, but it’s true. There is something that just feels right when we can filter out the noise and focus.

Technology is making it so easy to filter out distracting sounds, but we are still struggling to quieten our minds. We are struggling to declutter the cacophony of messages, negative news, “you shoulds” and unhelpful content that we have let in. At its core, we are struggling to let go of the loudest noise of all – our thoughts.

a young boy screaming into a microphone creating noise

When our mind is quiet and our thoughts are dimmed down, something incredible appears in their place.

A deep, life-restoring breath of clarity. A blank canvas of creation.

In the quietness we can hear an inner voice that is not just repeating the waveforms from the echo chamber of the attention economy. When we turn down the noise, we finally hear a voice of reason that has been silenced for too long. We hear our own voice. We experience our own truth.

Decluttering is hard work though. The process of physical decluttering often forces us to face memories and old stories that we used to tell ourselves. It forces us to question what is really adding value in our life or what is simply taking up space.

Letting go of physical things is a cleansing experience for many. Well worth the effort. They feel lighter like a burden has been lifted. Then the insight strikes… “WOW, I really don’t need all this stuff to feel happy and secure”.

And it is the same with our thoughts, beliefs and emotions. For some reason, we believe that because we created these things, that we should hang onto them. And we do.

We hang onto resentment, anger and frustration. We continue to feed guilt and listen to our inner critic. We give fear an audience and keep the ghosts of the past alive by bringing them back with our thoughts.

It is time to declutter.

  • What negative feelings do you want to let go of?
  • What unhelpful thoughts will you silence?
  • What beliefs about yourself and what you are capable of, are long past their expiry date?

When we declutter our house, we acknowledge that something that was once of value has played its role but is no longer of value.

Decluttering our minds and hearts is life changing. Until then, you are paying rent to store stuff that is just occupying precious space.

7 years ago I experienced quality noise cancelling headphones for the first time. I was on a bus with a friend about to travel to the airport and he handed me his new birthday present. A fellow audiophile. Usually I would decline the offer, but I knew he had as much respect for every speck of creativity that goes into creating a song as I did. So I tried the headphones out.  

I heard instruments and parts of the song that I had never heard before. Detail that was always there, but that I’d never noticed. I was listening deeply and clearly, without the ‘noise’. It was magical.

Noise cancelling head zones are just as useful for ourselves, as they are when we listen to others.

  • There are some things you can’t hear, until you cut out the noise.
  • There are some things you can’t see, until you clear out the clutter.
  • There are some places you can’t go, until you let go

And there are some people you can’t connect with, until you let go of what you believe about them…

…including yourself.

How you get to the noise cancelling head zone is up to you to find out. Some call it a state of meditation or flow. Of prayer or presence. Some find it in the stillness or while moving.

a hand outstretched into the clear waters ahead

You will know you are there, when the noise is gone, when your thoughts are clear and when you are connected with the most important voice in your life. Your own.

Run. Stretch. Read. Listen. Surf. Golf. Guitar. Meditate. Pray. Cook. Laugh. Create. Dance.

Go back to the quietness of your own presence. An unplugged place free from noise. A place where you no longer listen to who the world is saying you should be.

Just…be.

  • Just because you have not heard it yet, doesn’t mean it isn’t there.
  • Just because you have not seen it yet, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
  • Just because you have not done it yet, does not mean you cannot do it.

And how to do it? Turn the noise off. Cancel the notifications. Clear the schedule. Stop watching the news. Silence the alarms. Let go of old things and thoughts that are taking up space.

Reconnect.

Do whatever it takes on the outside, to realise that the noise cancelling head zone exists inside.

It may even be your heart…

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